In the last post I introduced the idea that, as Dutch Sheets says, all truth comes to us in seed form. What to a writer, teacher, or preacher may be mature and fruit bearing revelation is still received by me as a simple seed. Whether that seed will ever bear fruit in my life depends upon a lot of factors: the condition of my heart (the soil), and all the ways seed and soil are cared for over time.
In the Bible one of the primary ways the seed of God’s word matures is through meditation. When I meditate on the information in God’s word it becomes revelation. Don’t freak out at the word meditation. I realize that other religions, cultures, and even the occult practice a form of meditation. But remember, the enemy doesn’t create he only counterfeits. If there is a counterfeit meditation, then there must be a legitimate form of meditation. Here’s the difference. In occult forms of meditation my goal is to empty my mind. Biblical mediation is an exercise in filling my mind with God’s word.
When cattle eat grass they don’t just chew and swallow. They bring it back up and chew on it some more. It’s called chewing the cud. This is a great picture of what meditation is. I recall God’s word and “chew” on it over and over again. I make it the focus of my thoughts and the content in my mouth. I “chew” on it because I recognize that although I might quickly be able to absorb the information and principles, what I need is revelation of truth from the Spirit. So, I meditate in the scripture, chewing on God’s word, marrinating in it, that the seed of God’s word might grow and that the Spirit might bring revelation within that produces transformation.
The following is a selection of passages from the Bible that speak of meditation. Where the Hebrew word for meditation has been translated differently, or where the concept of meditation is described, I’ve highlited the idea.
8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
Blessed is the man
Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners,
Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
And in His law he meditates day and night.
3 He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper.
14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer.
15 I will meditate on Your precepts,
And contemplate Your ways.
16 I will delight myself in Your statutes;
I will not forget Your word.
Oh, how I love Your law!
It is my meditation all the day.
99 I have more understanding than all my teachers,
For Your testimonies are my meditation.
My son, if you receive my words,
And treasure my commands within you,
2 So that you incline your ear to wisdom,
And apply your heart to understanding;
3 Yes, if you cry out for discernment,
And lift up your voice for understanding,
4 If you seek her as silver,
And search for her as for hidden treasures;
5 Then you will understand the fear of the LORD,
And find the knowledge of God.
6 For the LORD gives wisdom;
From His mouth come knowledge and understanding;
My son, do not forget my law,
But let your heart keep my commands;
2 For length of days and long life
And peace they will add to you.
1 Tim 4:14-16
14 Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. 15 Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. 16 Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.
28 And my tongue shall speak of Your righteousness
And of Your praise all the day long.
30 The mouth of the righteous speaks wisdom,
And his tongue talks of justice.
31 The law of his God is in his heart;
None of his steps shall slide.
6 When I remember You on my bed,
I meditate on You in the night watches.
7 Because You have been my help,
Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.
24 My tongue also shall talk of Your righteousness all the day long;
For they are confounded,
For they are brought to shame
Who seek my hurt.
12 I will also meditate on all Your work,
And talk of Your deeds.
13 Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary;
Who is so great a God as our God?
14 You are the God who does wonders;
You have declared Your strength among the peoples.
15 You have with Your arm redeemed Your people,
The sons of Jacob and Joseph.
5 I remember the days of old;
I meditate on all Your works;
I muse on the work of Your hands.
6 I spread out my hands to You;
My soul longs for You like a thirsty land.
6 Listen, for I will speak of excellent things,
And from the opening of my lips will come right things;
7 For my mouth will speak truth;
Wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
8 All the words of my mouth are with righteousness;
Nothing crooked or perverse is in them.
28 The heart of the righteous studies [same Hebrew word for meditation] how to answer,
But the mouth of the wicked pours forth evil.